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Environmental Health

Environmental Health Services - 607.778.2887

The programs offered by this division strive to preserve and protect the quality of the environment as it impacts the public health of Broome County and to prevent illness and injuries caused by environmental factors. The Environmental Health Services Division is charged with providing information on and the necessary enforcement of state and local health laws, codes and standards that apply to various facilities and systems. The services performed by Environmental Health Services include the following:

  • Community Sanitation
  • Food Protection
  • Public Water Supply Protection
  • Hazardous Material Investigation
  • Air Quality
  • Vector-Borne Communicable Diseases such as Rabies, West Nile Virus and Lyme Disease
  • Childhood Lead Poisoning Prevention
  • Clean Indoor Air Act (CIAA)
  • Adolescent Tobacco Use Prevention Act (ATUPA)
  • Gas Drilling and How it May Affect Your Water 

 Emergency Preparedness 

Community Sanitation

  • Review and provide approval of all wastewater disposal systems for new construction.
  • Design, inspect, and provide approval for all residential replacement wastewater disposal systems.
  • Review and provide approval of all proposed commercial wastewater disposal systems.
  • Review and provide approvals for realty subdivisions including proposed water supply and wastewater disposal systems.
  • Inspect and issue annual operating permits for hotels/motels, travel trailer campgrounds, mobile home parks, and children's camps.
  • Inspect, issue permits and survey all public swimming pools and beaches in Broome County.

To open links use Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox or Internet Explorer

[ Sewage Disposal Permit Application ]

[ ETU (Aerator) Application Form ]

Professional Engineers List for the Design of Sewage Systems ]

[ Contractor Online Sewage System Construction Course ]

[ Sewage Pollution Right To Know (NYSDEC) ]

 Public Water Supply Protection 

  • Inspect, survey and monitor public water supplies and provide technical assistance to water supply operators.
  • Help prevent public well and aquifer contamination through plan review of facilities that use chemicals.
  • Assist town and village governments in implementing groundwater protection strategies and ordinances.

Swimming Pools and Bathing Beaches

Hazardous Materials Investigation 

  • Investigate and report on dumpsites, which may present a potential public health exposure.
  • Protect the public health through review and monitoring of hazardous waste site investigations and clean up.
  • Respond to chemical emergencies that may produce an environmental hazard; review remediation activities to reduce public health hazards.

Air Quality

  • Respond to reports of impacted indoor air quality and provide recommendations for corrective actions. Recent air quality problems have involved asbestos, carbon monoxide and radon.
  • Provide guidance on Public Health Law in regard to tobacco use issues.
  • Monitor compliance with the Clean Indoor Air Act on tobacco use.

Vector-Borne Communicable Disease Investigation

  • Control rabies with public education and by sponsoring pet vaccination clinics.
  • Investigation and follow-up of animal bite reports and submission of animal specimens for rabies analysis.
  • The Broome County Health Department will no longer be assisting in the direct shipment of ticks to the New York State Department of Health.  Three links are provided for your use to identify and provide information on ticks.

[ Lyme Disease Information and Personal Protective Measures ]

[ Additional Tick/Lyme Disease Information ]

[ Tick Identification & Testing Services ]

[ Additional Tick Identification & Testing Service ]

[ Insect ID Service ]

[ Rabies Information ]

[ West Nile Virus Information ]

[ Rodent Control After a Disaster ]

Childhood Lead Poisoning Prevention - 607.778.2847

Lead poisoning is caused by inhaling and/or ingesting anything with lead in it. It can cause health and development problems including learning disabilities, behavioral problems, kidney disease, hearing disabilities or even death.  There are many potential sources of lead, but most commonly, children are poisoned in their own environment by deteriorated lead based paint and lead dust.  Every child is required by the state to be tested at age one and again at age two.  Parents should be alert to the conditions that can cause lead poisoning, share this information with their child's health care provider and request blood lead testing if they believe their child may have been exposed to lead in any way.

All homes built before 1978 have the potential to have lead based paint hazards.  Lead safe work practices are essential to keep children safe.  If you have questions about lead paint safety, blood lead testing, or other concerns contact us for information at 607.778.2847.

There are currently two programs to address the problem of lead poisoning in our community, Childhood Lead Poisoning Prevention Program and Lead Primary Prevention.  You can learn more about each program from the links below.

Lead Primary Prevention Program Information ]

[ Childhood Lead Poisoning Prevention Program Information ]

Healthy Neighborhoods Program (HNP)

The Healthy Neighborhoods Program (HNP) is a FREE program committed to creating healthier neighborhoods one home at a time by reducing environmental health and safety issues in the home.

HNP will address environmental health and safety issues on:

  • asthma control
  • carbon monoxide poisoning prevention
  • fire and burn safety prevention
  • childhood lead poisoning prevention
  • residentail injuries (falls, poisonings)
  • smoke cessation
  • housing and property maintenance
  • effects of radon
  • mold control
  • pest control

For more information or to schedule your home safety survey today call 778-2847 or email

Clean Indoor Air Act (CIAA)  

CIAA is found in Article 13-E in the NYS Public Health Law and prohibits smoking in almost all workplaces, including restaurants and bars.  Employees and the public may confidentially report, violations of the CIAA to the BCHD by calling 778-2887.

Adolescent Tobacco Use Prevention Act (ATUPA)

The Adolescent Tobacco Use Prevention Act or ATUPA is found in Article 13-F of the NYS Public Health Law which covers regulation of tobacco products and herbal cigarettes and their distribution to minors.  This law was enacted to help stop the sale of tobacco products and herbal cigarettes to anyone under the age of 18.  Included under this law are: cigarettes, cigars, bidis, gutka, chewing tobacco, powdered tobacco, shisha, or other tobacco products, herbal cigarettes, electronic cigarettes, rolling papers or smoking paraphernalia.  Herbal cigarettes are made primarily of an herb or combination of herbs and are intended to be used in the same manner as tobacco.

  • We routinely visit businesses that sell tobacco to determine if they are in compliance with the law.  The BCHD takes enforcement against the operator of the business where underage sales are documented. 
  • The Broome County Sheriff may prosecute the cashier who makes the underage sale by charging the cashier with unlawfully dealing with a child, a second degree misdemeanor falling under Penal Law 260.21.
  • The BCHD is a NYSDOH certified tobacco sales trainer and sales clerks can take training classes free of charge whether they have sold tobacco to a minor or not.

Training classes will be offered at BCHD free of charge.  Registration is mandatory by calling 778-2837 no later than one week prior to class date.  Classes will be held on the following dates at 1:00 PM:

Gas Drilling and How it May Affect Your Water

  • Provide Certified Water Testing Laboratories, Drinking water regulations and other water-related information.
  • Information concerning Marcellus Shale and natural gas drilling.
  • Currently reviewing the Department of Environmental Conservation Supplemental General Environmental Impact Statement (sGEIS).
  • Provide water testing guidance for your well.

The BCHD is providing private well owners with a list of testing parameters that can indicate accidental fluid releases to groundwater during natural gas well drilling and development.  By no means is this an all-inclusive list; testing for all possible contaminants would be cost-prohibitive.  A sampling strategy is recommended that involves a comprehensive baseline test for water wells within 2,000 feet of a gas drilling site to be done no more than three months prior to the start of drilling. A smaller group of parameters can then be used to monitor water quality during the well drilling/development process.  Should there be changes over time in sampling results; more baseline testing may be warranted.  The use of a New York State certified lab to collect and analyze water samples is highly recommended.  See NYS Certified Labs link below.)

[ Gas Drilling Resources ]

[ Water Well Webinar ]

[ Recommended Testing Parameters for Private Wells ]

[ Certified Water Testing Laboratories ]

Environmental Health Links